The tractor manufacturing unit of public sector company HMT in Pinjore,Haryana has come under the scanner for recurring operational losses and its management is being investigated for their alleged role in fudging production data to show higher output.
The Union ministry of heavy industries and public enterprises has replaced SG Sridhar,chairman and managing director,with Harbhajan Singh,joint secretary,department of heavy industries.
Sridhar has been suspended along with three general managers including the head of its tractor division.
The company has suspended Alok Jain,(general manager tractors),J K Jain,(general manager,finance),and Atul Srivastava (general manager,engineering and research and development),for the irregularities. An inquiry committee is being set up to look into the issue.
The action taken against the four senior officials is the result of an inquiry conducted by Anthony Chacko,director,operations at HMT.
Chackos investigations revealed a mismatch in the companys financial statements on reported production and actual production. Chacko said that investigations are still on and the preliminary report has been submitted to the government.
According to an official,who spoke on the condition of anonymity,the alleged fudging of the company records has come at a time when the unit was contemplating to work out a revival plan. Earlier this year,the Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs (CCEA) had approved a Rs 1,083 crore package for HMT.
Another official at the Pinjore unit said that the funds are yet to be disbursed. This official added that there has been over-reporting of nearly 1,300 tractors in the financial year 2011-12 and during the last financial year.
The alleged tampering of the records comes at a time when HMT is producing tractors below its capacity.
Current annual production is in the range of 20 per cent of the installed capacity if 10,000 units per year.
HMT manufactures tractors in the range of 25-75 HP . The overall market share of the company in the tractor segment in the range of 0.5 -1 per cent.
The companys losses are also due to the high wage bill of Rs 48 crore at the Pinjore unit that currently employs 1,300,a large proportion of which are on the shop-floor.